I hate waking up, I hate mornings, and I hate leaving the comfort and warmth of my bed. Simply put, I love sleeping.
Yes, yes, I know that you can “sleep when you’re dead”, but for me, sleeping is also about relaxing from a stressful day and dreaming up new story ideas. I absolutely love it! Which makes it that much harder to wake up in the morning, especially mornings that are becoming colder and more dreary.
However, while I do love sleeping, I also have trouble falling asleep. It takes me at least 30 minutes to finally fall asleep, sometimes even a few hours to doze off into dreaming land. I toss, I turn, and I get extremely frustrated, the boyfriend yelling at me to “lay still!”. And yet, as hard as I try, I just can’t seem to easily doze off.
So, I changed up my routine a bit and I have tried a few things, and they have seemed to work! So, here is a list of my 5 things that could help you fall asleep faster and wake up better.
- Turn that Technology Off. I actually got this idea from The Happiness Project. When you are surfing the net, watching your favorite TV show, or playing Angry Birds on your phone, your brain is continuously in hyper mode. It doesn’t want to, and quite frankly cannot, shut off. One thing that has worked for me is turning off ALL technology one hour before bed. No television, no computer, no phone, no iPod, iPad, or whatever else Apple has created. Instead, I talk face-to-face with someone I love, I read a book (for pleasure) or I just lay in bed and think. One hour is enough time to give your brain a rest and allow your body to slowly feel the exhaustion that it needs to go into a deep sleep.
- Wake Up the Natural Way. This is something that I have found works quite well for me. Here in Spain, we have these robber/storm/light proof blinds. They are heavy, they are quite unsafe if there was to be a fire, and they let NO light in what so ever. So, when morning comes and your alarm goes off, the entire room is so dark that you think it is still night time until you open those bad boys up. What I have found that works, is simply to wake up to light. Leave your blinds open and let the sun come in. Maybe keep the window cracked open throughout the night and let the chirps of the birds be your alarm clock. It really does help – at least for me it does – to wake up when the room is not completely dark and stuffy.
- Plan Out Tomorrow. Many of us cannot fall asleep because we are thinking about what needs to be done the next day, worried that so-and-so will not make it to so-and-so practice tomorrow, and frustrated that we did not get this-or-that done. Our brain is in constant thinking mode and we just Can’t. Fall. Asleep. It’s quite annoying isn’t it? Well, instead of going over tomorrow’s to-do-list in your head while you’re trying to fall asleep, write it down before you fall asleep – maybe even during the hour that you are without your technology. Write down places you need to go, things you need do, people you need to see, and items you need to buy. Not only will it leave you less stressed throughout the night, but it will also help the next day when you wake up and see everything that needs to be done.
- Wake Up Like You’re Ripping Off a Band-Aid. Simply put, just do it. Don’t hit that snooze alarm – you will end up hitting it more and more -, don’t groan and whine, and definitely don’t wake up with a frown and curse whatever day of the week it is – that will make you loathe waking up even more. Just wake up on that first buzz, sit up and stretch a bit, and then jump out of bed, a smile on your face and a body and brain that is ready to start the day! But trust me, it will be hard the first couple of days (very hard) but you will get used to it eventually.
- Never Go to Bed Mad. I will end on the old saying “Never go to bed mad”. And it’s true. If you go to bed angry, you will just silently stew, thinking about what he/she did, how angry you are at whatever, and you will never fall asleep. And when you do eventually fall asleep, you will probably have nightmares involving your anger and then wake up grouchy and even more mad. So just don’t do it. Resolve all your problems and fights BEFORE you hit the sheets, that way you can actually get a good night’s sleep and wake up healthy and happy! 🙂